Women golfers aiming for follow up title

The women’s golf team started its season on Tuesday in Cedar Rapids. Last year they finished the season after bringing home the state title. They started Tuesday right where they left off last year with another win.

The team finished in first place and seniors Hannah and Hailey Bermel took first and second individually. Sophomore Megan Sawyer and seniors Taylor Sernett and Mackenzie Roberts also posted scores for the Tigers.

The expectations are very high this year, with almost everyone returning. “We are hoping to come out strong again this year and hopefully bring home another state championship,” Hailey said.

All the girls have worked very hard in the offseason to be prepared to defend their title. “I think we have a target on our back considering we have most of our team back from last year. I think we are just going to defend our title by going out and playing like we do,” Hannah said.

The teams that are going to be chasing them this year are Des Moines area schools and conference opponent Dubuque Senior.

There are four seniors who are returning from last year, and they are all prepared to lead the team back to State.

“The seniors are and have been wonderful leaders and examples of hard work, but truth be told, everyone that returned from last year’s team has helped lead our team in some way.  From reminding golfers that working hard pays off, to lightening the mood when we need to relax — every personality on this team has molded us into the team we have become.  We have so many different personalities, yet we work so well together.  We just know how to appreciate each other and have fun together,” head coach Megan Youngkent said.

When a team has as much experience as they have, it can make seeing the steps to success a lot easier. “The great thing about playing in the state tournament year after year is that the golfers get the ‘bug’ — they see what State is about, how amazing the atmosphere is, the ‘hype’ of getting to go, and it makes them want to do whatever it takes to work to get back there. They want to carry on the tradition of hard work set before them. One of the things that makes this team extra special to me is that I’ve coached their older sisters. Our championship team in 2011 had a great deal of experience, but these girls have grown up going to CFHS girls golf meets as young children and have been a part of our team in some way for years. This team is going to be really difficult to say goodbye to,” Youngkent said.

Having targets on their backs, everyone knows they have to work even harder this year to succeed. “After winning a state championship, everyone will be watching us and most likely rooting against us. I think we are focusing on practicing hard and just paying attention to our own game,” Hailey said.

They continue their season on Monday in Dubuque.

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